Brooks Ghost 8 provides a comfortable and smooth ride to neutral runners. Brooks Ghost 9 has the same properties with a more seamless upper and provides a bit more cushioning.
The Brooks Ghost 9 is the updated version of the Brooks Ghost 8, which is a neutral cushioning running shoe from Brooks.
Minor tweaks have been made to the upper of the Brooks Ghost 8 to create the Brooks Ghost 9.
The Brooks Ghost 9 has engineered mesh that provides structure in the upper and enhances breathability just like the Brooks Ghost 8 even though the mesh differs a tiny bit.
The main change has been to the no-sew overlays and the amount of stitches in the upper of the Brooks Ghost 9 .
The Brooks Ghost 9 has less stitches in its upper than the Brooks Ghost 8 both in its heel as in its forefoot.
In addition, the overlays that wrap the midfoot in the Brooks Ghost 8 are placed differently in the Brooks Ghost 9. Instead of running from the laces down to the midsole, there are thin strips that run along the midfoot to hold the mesh and therefore also your foot in place.
What has not changed, however, is the no-sew overlay that wraps around the heel starting from a little past the midfoot.
The backs of the two running shoes look completely different with the Brooks Ghost 8 being more open, but both running shoes should be able to deliver a good amount of support in that area.
The last difference can be found at the front of the shoe where the overlay at the front of the Brooks Ghost 9 has been made almost completely stitch-free and more streamlined than the one on the Brooks Ghost 8.
All in all, the Brooks Ghost 9 has decreased the amount of stitches in its upper so has become more seamless than the Brooks Ghost 8. This should benefit comfort as in not causing many irritation points.
The Brooks Ghost 8 and the Brooks Ghost 9 have a similarly constructed midsole that has a full-length crash pad on the lateral side that runs from the back of the heel all the way to the front of the shoe.
This crash pad should provide you with soft landings and smooth transitions to toe-off thereafter. Such a crash pad also tends to increase the stability of a running shoe despite the Brooks Ghost 8 and the Brooks Ghost 9 not being stability running shoes.
A minor difference between the midsoles of the Brooks Ghost 8 and the Brooks Ghost 9 can be found on the medial side, where there is a separation between the section under the heel and the section under the forefoot of the Brooks Ghost 9.
This separation is an indication that some of the material of the crash pad has also been implemented on the medial side under the heel in the Brooks Ghost 9. The Brooks Ghost 8 does not come with such a separation.
This change could increase the cushioning under the heel of the Brooks Ghost 9.
And indeed, running shoe lab tests show that for men, the amount of heel cushioning provided by the Brooks Ghost 9 is greater than the amount provided by the Brooks Ghost 8.
Both running shoes deliver a good amount of cushioning in the heel, but that of the Brooks Ghost 9 for men is almost to the max now.
The difference in amount of heel cushioning is minor in the women's version of the running shoes, but the Brooks Ghost 9 still displays just a tiny bit more heel cushioning than the Brooks Ghost 8 in its cushioning profile.
The amount of forefoot cushioning displays a similar pattern for women but no differences for men. In general, the Brooks Ghost 8 and the Brooks Ghost 9 do not have a super cushy forefoot but rather display a balanced forefoot cushioning profile with above average forefoot cushioning.
Both the Brooks Ghost 8 and the Brooks Ghost 9 are geared toward providing you with soft landings and are good running shoes for heel-strikers.
The Brooks Ghost 9 brings runners a tiny bit closer to the ground than the Brooks Ghost 8. For women, the difference is about 1 mm in the heel. The differences are about 1 mm in the heel and 0.6 mm in the forefoot for men.
So the Brooks Ghost 9 has a slightly lower profile and a slightly smaller heel-to-toe drop (9.7 mm for women and 11.4 mm for men) compared to the Brooks Ghost 8 (10.8 mm for women and 12.0 mm for men).
Running shoe lab tests also indicate that the amount of stability provided by the two running shoes is about the same and on the higher end of the spectrum despite neither of the two being stability running shoes.
What has also not changed much is the amount of flexibility of the Brooks Ghost 9, which is about as flexible as the Brooks Ghost 8 for both men and women and falls on the stiffer end of the spectrum.
However, despite no great change in flexibility, the outsole of the Brooks Ghost 9 is somewhat different than that of the Brooks Ghost 8.
Both running shoes have an outsole that is quite segmented, but the rubber pods are slightly smaller and more plentiful in the outsole of the Brooks Ghost 9 than they are in the Brooks Ghost 8.
The outsole segmentation should benefit the smoothness of your ride in both the Brooks Ghost 9 and the Brooks Ghost 8.
The women's version of the Brooks Ghost 8 weighs approximately 8.5 oz (241 grams), while the Brooks Ghost 9 for women weighs approximately 9.0 oz (255 grams).
The men's version of the Brooks Ghost 8 weighs about 10.9 oz (309 grams), and the Brooks Ghost 9 for men weighs approximately 10.5 oz (298 grams).
The Brooks Ghost 9 is a nice update of the Brooks Ghost 8. With the changes that Brooks has made, you should still be able to get the same soft ride from the Brooks Ghost 9 as you did from the Brooks Ghost 8 with just a tiny bit more heel cushioning.
Note that while the Brooks Ghost 8 and the Brooks Ghost 9 are running shoes that provide quite a bit of stability, they are for neutral runners, so if you are an overpronator, you may want to look into a real stability running shoe for support.
Note: The weight of a running shoe depends on the size of the running shoe, so any weights mentioned in this review may differ from the weight of the running shoe you choose to wear. Running shoes of the same size were compared for this review.
This review falls under: Brooks